A day after Juan Manuel Marquez knocked out Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Mayweather Jr. came out and said something very interesting. He pointed out that the manner in which his arch rival got defeated may be far more significant than the loss itself. That being knocked out cold for the first time in a long time might linger and slow Pacquiao down in the future more than a lot of people think.
Because of Mayweather’s and Pacquiao’s longstanding feud, the comments were thoroughly dismissed. More than anything, they were viewed as little parting shots that the undefeated superstar was taking at the guy who had done severe damage to his reputation over the prior few years.
More recently, Oscar De La Hoya came out and echoed Mayweather’s concerns. He too said that the way in which Pacquiao lost may make it difficult for him to recover. That it wasn’t simply about coming back from defeat – it was about bouncing back from a brutal knockout.
"That's going to be the million dollar question because psychologically he is always going to be feeling that punch. He's always going to be looking out for that punch. He will be doubting himself [and telling himself] 'can I do this again.' - even in training, even in training [he will be doubting himself]. History shows this, and I'm not making this up...history shows that it's impossible to [fully] come back [from that kind of a knockout],” De La Hoya said (via Boxing Scene).
“Can he come back? It's up to him. You look at Paul Williams [at how he got knocked out]. Back in the day Thomas Hearns knocked out Roberto Duran and he landed face first. You look at Ricky Hatton at how he got knocked out. You look at history in boxing."
What do you think? It was easy to dismiss that analysis when Mayweather was the only guy making it. Now that numerous fighters are saying the same thing, though, the idea suddenly becomes a lot more credible.
Will Pacquiao be able to recover from that brutal Marquez punch?